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Don't miss out on the business potential of 5G

The list of advanced industry use cases enabled by 5G technology is a long one: remote control of heavy machinery in dangerous environments, drone field maintenance of power sub-stations and vehicle-to-vehicle cooperative collision avoidance, to name a few. But what is the revenue potential for telecom operators addressing these use cases, which are already transforming the manufacturing, utilities and automotive sectors?
Don't miss out on the business potential of 5G

The revenue opportunity of 5G and digital industrialization

Industries are digitalizing, and current mobile technologies already support this transformation. 5G will further enhance industry digitalization use cases and will make possible others not at all supported today. For example, in the healthcare sector, you can perform remote patient monitoring today and ambulances are connected to send and receive information. Yet in just a few years, mobile technologies will support augmented reality (AR)-aided medical treatment, and 5G will later enable services such as ambulance drones and remote robotic surgery.

Back to the revenue opportunity. We have found that by 2026 there is a USD 619bn revenue potential for operators addressing 10 specific industries with 5G – manufacturing, energy and utilities, public safety, healthcare, public transport, automotive, media and entertainment, financial services, retail and agriculture.


This corresponds to an additional 36 percent revenue growth potential on top of current operator service revenues. This is unarguably a substantial revenue pool. But to capture this opportunity will require a lot from the companies pursuing this path. Not surprisingly, they can achieve larger growth if they embrace every step of the value chain: connectivity provisioning, service enablement and application provisioning. Operators will need to change and focus their organization’s engagement, operation and production models to succeed.

I’ve discussed the 10 industries with operators in all different parts of the world, and there has been great interest across the board. Naturally, the future of their mobile broadband and fixed wireless access businesses are high on their agenda, but adding these industry digitalization opportunities to the mix is also at the top.

How can 5G transform manufacturing?

Out of the 10 industries studied, we have found manufacturing to comprise the largest revenue opportunity for operators, USD 113bn in 2026 alone. It is a huge industry globally, and it is a business experiencing a lot of change due to hyper-competition; manufacturing companies know that the next supplier is just a click away and are facing increased volatility due to shorter business and product lifecycles, as well as disruptive technological advances such as 3D printing and the automation of robots and warehouses.5G will help, providing the low latency capabilities required to perform remote monitoring and control of production line robots for instance.

Of course, manufacturing is only one of the industries where 5G will play a role. Fortunately, we do not need to wait until 5G is deployed to start exploring the industry digitalization business possibilities. We can start today.

Dive deeper into the 5G business potential in our webinar

Gain insights into leading operators' thoughts on the essential features of 5G and the opportunities they plan to pursue to monetize 5G in the on-demand version of our recent webinar.

In it, we explore the new editions of our 5G Readiness survey and the 5G Business Potential report.

Listen to new 5G podcast

And please listen to my new "15 minutes with 5G" podcast called:  The Business Potential for 5G in Industry Digitalization


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